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Eric Peterson, Published April 25 2013

Weather wipes out Dragons spring football game

MOORHEAD – An abnormal spring will have an abnormal ending for the Minnesota State Moorhead football program.

The Dragons won’t have their spring game, which was set for Saturday, due to poor field conditions.

“It’s always disappointing when you can’t have that kind of event to have the alumni and fans to rally around in the spring,” Dragons head coach Steve Laqua said. “There was some disappointment from the players because they like competing, they like putting the game jersey on.”

The Dragons have had a nomadic existence this spring camp, not being able to practice on their fields due to snowfall. While most of the snow cover is gone, the fields are too saturated.

MSUM has completed 11 of its 15 spring practices, using North Dakota State’s Dacotah Field, Fargo Shanley’s Sid Cichy Stadium and the Fargodome. All three of those facilities have artificial turf.

“Those guys have been gracious enough to fit us into their schedules,” Laqua said. “We’ve been able to get the same kind of spring that we normally have.”

The Dragons are slated to have their final four spring practices at Dacotah Field and Cichy Stadium.

MSUM decided to not move the spring game off campus Saturday due to activities surrounding the Dragon Fire Walk for Athletics. That is an annual event to help raise money for scholarships.

“We talked about it, but in the end it wasn’t a strong option,” MSUM athletic director Doug Peters said of moving the spring game off campus.

Despite the moving around of practice times and sites, Laqua said the team has had a productive spring.

“This has definitely been our best spring, which is encouraging,” said Laqua, who is entering his third year as head coach next fall. “I think it’s a good sign of a lot of young kids that are hungry.”

The Dragons have 50 players on their spring roster with four seniors. Laqua expects to add around 40 freshmen to the roster in the fall.

Linebacker Chris Lee, running back Zayne Medhaug and cornerback Chris Binford have played well this spring, according to Laqua. All three are sophomores. Lee (Dell Rapids, S.D.) and Medhaug (Wahpeton, N.D.) played as true freshmen last fall. Binford (Artesia, Calif.) was a redshirt freshman last fall.

Sophomore Jake Hodge (Kasson, Minn.) is at the top of the depth chart at quarterback. Sophomore Ryan Toelle (Sisseton, S.D.) is also in the QB mix.

“There will be a lot of positions in the mix this fall because there are no grizzled veterans,” Laqua said.

Readers can reach Forum reporter

Eric Peterson at (701) 241-5513.

Peterson’s blog can be found

at peterson.areavoices.com